Earning As: September 2019

This regular feature recognizes achievements, activities, and accolades of ACC faculty and staff. To submit news or suggestions, see the contact information below.
General Assembly 2019 Employee of the Year

Nelson Brites, ACC Network Engineer I, was recognized as the 2019 ACC Employee of the Year during General Assembly on Friday, September 6. Brites has led teams in launching security firewalls, building security initiatives to protect all ACC employees, performing security audits, and working to provide proactive monitoring of servers, network equipment, and firewall protection. He has earned multiple industry certifications to develop his career and improve security at ACC.

The Office of Communications & Marketing is once again among the top District 4 contenders for the 2019 NCMPR Medallion Awards, leading the pack with a total of 10 awards for best brochure (single or series), best flyer (single or series), best electronic newsletter, best microsite, best original photography (unmanipulated), best print advertisement (single or series), best television/video advertisement (single or series), best outdoor media (single or series), best interior signage/displays (single or series), and best communication success story or community relations campaign. Awards will be distributed at the NCMPR Conference, October 27-29.

Gary Joe Wright, D.D.S., F.A.G.D, Dental Hygiene professor and consulting dentist, became a Fellow in the Academy of General Dentistry. Only six percent of general dentists ever achieve this designation, which requires 500 hours of continuing education, most of which must be live attendance, and passing a comprehensive examination that covers all phases of dentistry. Wright received the honor this summer in Connecticut during the annual scientific session of the academy.

The ACC Student Money Management Office and its director, Karen Serna, received the 2019 Association for Financial Counseling & Planning Education Center of the Year. The AFCPE organization works with a variety of agencies including, but not limited to, higher education, which makes this national award that much more noteworthy. The national recognition emphasizes their dedication to students' financial success and ultimately student success.

Carolynn Reed, ACC Math department chair, was published by the League for Innovation in the Community College. Her article, "Evolution of Developmental Math at Austin Community College: the Power of Corequisites," is featured in the League's September 2019 online magazine, League Connections.

Peck Young, retired director of the Austin Community College Center for Public Policy and Political Studies (CPPPS), and retired ACC Government professor Stefan Haag, with assistance from Dr. Jeff Smith of Opinion Analysts Inc., published a study on the impact of straight-ticket voting. The report indicates ending straight-ticket voting will lead to voter fatigue and "roll-off" in voting, especially among minorities and older voters. To read the full report, visit austincc.edu/cppps.

The Office of Institutional Effectiveness & Accountability released the 2019 Survey of Entering Student Engagement (SENSE) report showing ACC ranks higher than the national average on two important benchmarks: "Clear Academic Plan and Pathway" and "Academic and Social Support Network." A summary of the SENSE results with practical suggestions to help entering students is available online. Look for more details about the findings in next month's FacStaff Digest.

The Office of Student Life is the 2019 recipient of the Higher Education Community Impact Award - Community College — a Texas Governor's Volunteer Award. The awards — presented by the OneStar Foundation and Texas First Lady Cecilia Abbott — honor the exemplary service of individuals, groups, and organizations that have made a significant and measurable contribution to their communities through service and volunteering. Read more here.

Yesenia Garcia Herrington, Drama adjunct associate professor, appeared in two regional commercials this summer: H-E-B and TX Lottery, as well as two national commercials: Frito's and Lowe's. Herrington also performed in a staged reading for Raul Garza at the Rite Out Loud Festival at the Scottish Rite Theatre.

Kristen Rogers, Drama adjunct associate professor, directed a new one-man show, Don't Blame the Car, written by and starring Jaston Williams (of Greater Tune fame), which was performed at the Classic Theatre of San Antonio in June and at the Grand 1894 Opera House in Galveston in August.

Greg Romero, Drama adjunct associate professor, was a "featured playwright" for Hyde Park Theatre's Play Slam on July 17th. They did a staged reading of a 15-minute excerpt from his full-length play, The Babel Project. Romero has also been selected as one of five pilot members of the newly-formed Hyde Park Theatre Playwrights Group in Austin, Texas. The group meets bi-weekly to experiment and share work, and receives developmental support from Hyde Park Theatre from August 2019 - June 2020. Additionally, his short play, Bulldozers, was produced by New Manifest Theatre Company in Austin as part of their Manifest Minifest of New Plays in August. Finally, Romero was also a Teaching/Playwriting Artist at the Inge Center for the Arts' Playwrights Discovery Program in Independence, Kansas, from July 22 - August 1.

Jonathan Young, Drama adjunct associate professor, provided fight direction for the Georgetown Palace's main stage production of Disney's Newsies, which opened August 30.

Do you know a faculty or staff member who has accomplished something notable outside the classroom or in their community? We want to hear about them. Contact Vicky Garza Gonzalez at victoria.garza@austincc.edu.

Add new comment